ISED invests $120 million to build out CMC Microsystems’ semiconductor network

The FABrIC network looks to provide resources to foster semiconductor innovation in Canada.

François-Philippe Champagne, the Minister responsible for Innovation, Science, and Economic Development (ISED) Canada, has announced a $120-million investment into CMC Microsystems to build out a network to support Canada’s semiconductor industry. 

“ISED’s strategic investment in FABrIC will enable Canadian innovators to be competitive in the global semiconductor industry.”

Gordon Harling, CMC CEO

The investment was made through the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) and will support CMC with the creation of the Fabrication of Integrated Components for the Internet’s Edge (FABrIC) network. FABrIC will operate alongside CMC’s cross-Canada partners, looking to unite stakeholders who can support the design, manufacturing, and commercialization of semiconductors, as well as the development of intelligent sensor technology.

FABrIC will provide resources to Canadian entrepreneurs and researchers to foster semiconductor innovation, products, and manufacturing processes in Canada, CMC president and CEO Gordon Harling said in a statement. 

“We have world-class semiconductor talent and manufacturing capabilities in Canada, and ISED’s strategic investment in FABrIC will enable Canadian innovators to be competitive in the global semiconductor industry,” Harling said. 

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According to the impact targets on FABrIC’s website, the five-year, $223-million project is looking to help launch 75 new companies, file 215 intellectual property applications, and train 25,000 highly qualified personnel in academia. 

According to reporting from The Logic, it is hoped that startups will come out of FABrIC with prototypes that can be used to help raise funding from private investors or secure customer orders. FABrIC will also provide projects developing new technologies in certain hardware fields with up to $10 million, while academic labs can be fully underwritten, The Logic also reported.   

Founded in 1984, CMC aims to support research and innovation in technologies such as microelectronics, photonics, micro-electromechanical systems, the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and quantum software and hardware.

Last year, semiconductor industry experts and organizations, including CMC, formed SILICAN, a new lobbying group to advocate for the semiconductor industry in Canada. In October 2023, SILICAN called for the federal government to provide targeted domestic chip support as part of its first policy report. 

In April, the federal government contributed $46 million from the SIF to IBM as it looked to invest in the operations of its semiconductor assembly plant in Bromont, Québec. 

Feature image courtesy Unsplash. Photo by Jonas Svidras.

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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